Thursday, November 17, 2011

Miss Darcy Falls In Love Tour: Interview with Sebastian Butler & Giveaway!

Today I was happy to have Sebastian Butler (hero of Miss Darcy Falls In Love by Sharon Lathan) over for tea. He was kind enough to answer a few of my questions about love and music and allow me to share them with you. Also, Ms. Lathan, his literary agent, has generously offered a copy Miss Darcy Falls In Love for me to give to one of you. So please, pull up a chair and have a cup of tea as we welcome Mr. Butler.
Lieder Madchen - It is a pleasure to meet you in person at last, Mr. Butler. I have heard so much about you from Ms. Lathan that I feel like I know you already. Thank you so much for taking the time to come and visit. How do you like your tea?
Sebastian Butler - The pleasure is entirely mine, Ms. Madchen. I am delighted to visit with you today and am completely at my leisure. Pick my brain as you wish, although I fear you have me at a distinct disadvantage in knowing so much about me already. Whatever shall we talk about then? (He smiles and winks, gesturing at the steaming pot of tea.) I suppose how I like my tea is a logical place to start. Hopefully it isn’t too disappointing to learn that I am not particular. More often than not the tea cup is forgotten on the corner of the piano, only to be drank cold hours later. Since that is unlikely to happen today, a small spoon of sugar only is preferred.
LM – Lovely, I am going to enjoy our chat. (I smile and hand him a cup, stirring a generous helping of cream into my own.) May I inquire as to your family, Mr. Butler? I understand you have an abundance of sisters, perhaps you could tell us a little about them?
SB - My family is quite well, Ms. Madchen. Thank you for asking. And since it will appease my father, Lord Essenton, on the off chance he does read this, I will dutifully point out that although “Mr. Butler” is a perfectly acceptable address as far as I am concerned, I am a viscount so should be addressed as Lord Nell. See what an obedient son I am? (He laughs aloud, winking again.)
I have five younger sisters, which is an “abundance” indeed! My life has never been boring, that is for sure. I adore them and consider myself blessed to have been surrounded by loving siblings, each of whom are incredible women and the joy of my youth. Of course now that I have said that publicly they shall use it to their advantage, finding some way to finagle favors from me. (He pauses to chuckle and sip his tea, his grey eyes soft and momentarily distant.) One negative to my travels of late is that I miss them. Adele and Reine, the youngest of my sisters, are at home in England. Clarisse is now the Duchess of Tichbourne so our paths cross rarely. My sisters nearest to me in age, Guinevere who is Lady Rycroft and Vivienne who married my dearest friend Adrien, the Marquis de Marcov, are in France so my wife and I are able to visit with them frequently. Between the six of us, and our mother, we keep the postal services busy!
LM – I am sure you do! I have three sisters and five brothers so I know exactly what you mean. When you were a child and first learning to play an instrument, what was it that attracted you to music?
SB - Hmmm. Now that is an interesting question. (He sits back into the chair and stares into his teacup for a spell before continuing in a bemused tone.) Perhaps some artists can pinpoint the precise moment when they discovered their aptitude. I cannot say. My earliest memories are of listening to my mother play the harpsichord. I assume it was she who first sat me on her lap and placed my fingers upon the keys - It certainly would not have been my father! - yet the truth is that I have no clear memory of learning to play. It as if I was born with an innate love of music and embedded skill for playing instruments. (Abruptly he leans forward, his face intent.) Forgive me, Ms. Madchen, for sounding arrogant. I do not account myself superior or particularly special. I can name dozens of others who are far more talented than I, including my wife. It is a gift to be sure, but one granted to me and not of my devising, although I do work hard to perfect my skill.
LM – I truly envy your gift. I am still but a beginner at the piano even after studying for years. As an accomplished musician and composer, are there any pieces of music that you have a particular fondness for?
SB - I know this will sound cliché and an obligatory response designed to curry favor, but the honest truth is that I am fondest of the compositions created in collaboration with or inspired by my wife. How could I not be? However, fondness for a piece of music is subtly different than saying what are my favorite pieces to play. The latter refers more to the skill required to perform or to the satisfaction engendered when mastering a complex, moving composition. In that case I prefer the works of Beethoven, especially his sonatas and most recent works, as well as Mozart, Franz Danzi, Cherubini, Hummel... (He laughs and shakes his head.) As you can see, my taste is eclectic, and that is a dangerous question to ask of a musician unless you wish to be here all day whilst I bore you to tears listing names impossible to spell and pronounce! Next question then, Ms. Madchen.
LM - I apologize if you find this question to be overly personal and impertinent, but what was the first thought that went through your head when you finally admitted to yourself that you had fallen in love with Miss Georgiana Darcy?
SB - Oh my! You are hitting me with some tough ones! I stupidly denied my feelings for so long, not fully recognizing that my sentiments were shifting from ones of friendship to love for several weeks. Not a great span of time but when one is struggling with the emotions it seems an eternity. To my dismay, the first thoughts were ones of despair. I was sure she did not return my affection, for one, and was furthermore convinced she loved another. (He takes a gulp of the cold tea, his face pale and hand trembling slightly.) Forgive me, but the memory is not a pleasant one.
LM – No, you must forgive me, Lord Nell. However, if you will bear with me, I have one more impertinent inquiry. In your whirlwind romance with its many ups and downs, what was the hardest moment for you to bear?
SB - (He hesitates before responding, his words halting and voice hoarse.) Without a doubt it was seeing her with Baron Caxton. Fortunately I was not subjected to witnessing them together too often, that a blessing or I am sure I would have gone mad. I nearly did lose all shreds of my sanity at the de Valday gala in Paris when she... No, I cannot speak of it! That is why I had to leave Paris and why I.... I am sorry, Ms. Madchen, but may we change the subject?
LM - Of course, my apologies. What is your opinion of novelists, Lord Nell? 

SB - I love an enticing novel and applaud writers who weave stories. Their genius is similar to a composer, is it not? An art form designed to entertain or induce emotion in those who listen, or in the case of an author, those who read, should be appreciated. My wife and I read the popular novels together, taking turns picking the book. I am fond of Walter Scott and Defoe, while her favorites are Fanny Burney and Jane Austen. We recently read Frankenstein and... (He grins and lowers his voice.) ...she pretended to be shocked and horrified, but I know that she loved it.

LM – I am nearly finished reading Frankenstein as part of my education and I confess I found it to be quite horrifying. (smiles sheepishly) Scott and Austen on the other hand are authors whose books I have read many times before and will read many times again. If you were able to perform with any musician at any venue, who and where would it be? And what song would you choose?

SB - Performing with Lady Nell is my greatest joy. I would not reject a chance to play in Vienna with Mozart, were he alive, or with Herr Beethoven once again. Yet neither they or any other would eclipse the pleasure of sitting beside my wife, on stage or in the privacy of our chambers. As for which song, well, that would be the songs we wrote for each other on our wedding day, particularly the one I first sang for her alone that night. (He flushes faintly and shifts in the chair, then he shrugs.) If I were naughty like my grandmother, Lady Warrow, I would frankly illuminate as to why I choose that song. But I am a gentleman so will leave the reasons up to your imagination!

LM – (blushes profusely) Oh, well, umm…I would love to hear you and Lady Nell perform, on a stage of course. If you should ever come to America I hope you will arrange for a concert. I would be delighted to meet your lovely wife. Again, thank you so much for coming, Lord Nell.

SB - I have yet to travel to the Americas, Ms. Madchen, and would dearly love to do so. It would be marvelous to attend an opera in New York or Philadelphia, perhaps with Benjamin Carr or James Hewitt. Thank you for the suggestion! I shall discuss the idea with Lady Nell and if we do undertake the excursion I will be sure to inform you. I have enjoyed our discourse immensely. Thank you for the opportunity.

Synopsis of Miss Darcy Falls in Love--

Noble young ladies were expected to play an instrument, but Georgiana Darcy is an accomplished musician who hungers to pursue her talents. She embarks upon a tour of Europe, ending in Paris where two very different men will ignite her heart in entirely different ways and begin a bitter rivalry to win her. But only one holds the key to her happiness.

Set in post-Napoleonic Empire France, Miss Darcy Falls in Love is a riveting love story that enters a world of passion where gentlemen know exactly how to please and a young woman learns to direct her destiny and understand her heart.

Sharon’s Bio--

Sharon Lathan is the best-selling author of The Darcy Saga sequel series to Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice. Her previously published novels are: Mr. and Mrs. Fitzwilliam Darcy: Two Shall Become One, Loving Mr. Darcy, My Dearest Mr. Darcy, In the Arms of Mr. Darcy, A Darcy Christmas, and The Trouble With Mr. Darcy. Miss Darcy Falls in Love is Georgiana’s tale of love and adventure while in France. Complete with a happy ending. In addition to her writing, Sharon works as a Registered Nurse in a Neonatal ICU. She resides with her family in Hanford, California in the sunny San Joaquin Valley. Visit Sharon on her website: and on Austen Authors, her group blog with 20 novelist of Austen literature:


Sharon Lathan has offered to give away a copy of Miss Darcy Falls In Love to a commenter. All you have to do to enter is tell me your favorite piece of music along with your e-mail address. For an extra entry, spread the word and leave a link. Following is not required but greatly appreciated. This giveaway is open to the US and Canada only. It ends on Dec. 1 at 12:01 a.m. Good Luck!

                         Lieder Madchen


  1. I enjoyed the interview with the hero. Too sweet! Thanks for the posting.

    Please do not enter me in the giveaway. I have my copy- yeah!

  2. Only one favorite piece of music? Oh dear...Okay, let me think about this a moment...

    ...While I'm thinking, let me say I quite envy your teatime chat with Mr. Butler. He sounds quite fascinating!

    ...Hmm...I think I'm going to have to go with 'Freedom' by Michael W Smith. It's the gorgeous, sweeping title track of his first instrumental album. Absolutely. Gorgeous. Inspiring! I attempt to play it on the piano, but mine is but a feeble shadow of the original. So beautiful. Also very good for when I'm wanting to work through things :o)


  3. Great interview! I don't know a particular piece, but I like Mozart.

  4. Thank you Natalie for spending some time with my hero Sebastian. He is quite the charmer, isn't he? No wonder Georgiana could not resist! He told me that he enjoyed the interview immensely, even those emotional questions (what a softie he is), and wanted me to thank you again.

    Thanks Sophia, Rebecca, and Marlene for commenting. I happen to love "Freedom" as well, Rebecca.

  5. I love P&P stories! And picturing Simon Baker is perfect.
    One of my favorite musical pieces is The Four Seasons by Vivaldi - love those changing moods.
    I shared this post on FB -

    and Twittered -!/DianeSallans/status/137571040934113280

    sallans d at yahoo dot com

  6. I love Enter the Haggis and listen to their music right now almost every day. Litter and Leaves is my favorite song.
    lvsgund at

  7. Music for the ballet Sleeping Beauty, especially this time of year!
    Best wishes and thanks for a chance to win this fantabulous giveaway!

  8. I don't have a fave piece but I really love the Black Swan musical soundtrack which uses Tchaikovsky's music. Especially, Perfection, an awesome song

  9. I don't have a favorite piece of music. But I like most music!

  10. I don't know if it'd count, but the score to 500 days of summer haha.

  11. I would have to say the glitch mob: We can make the world stop! I get such excellent ideas when Im listening to that song!

  12. Here a link to my tweet!!/Ocedday/status/139365334145703938

  13. I'd love this book!

    My favorite music is classical music - Beethoven.

  14. Oops - forgot my email:

    ccfioriole at gmail dot com

    Here's my tweet!/christinafiorio/status/140736940025720832

    and my email c

  15. Congratulations to Preeti! Your name was chosen by and your copy of my novel is on the way. WhooHoo!

    Thanks to everyone who commented. I hope you buy Miss Darcy Falls in Love and enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it.

    Merry Christmas! Sharon